Determining Horse Weight
Using Measurements

Weight tape not appropriate for determining horse weight in your situation? Need a better estimate of your horse’s weight? Then let’s take a look at...

Taking measurements and using math...

This method takes a little more time and talent than using a weight tape (after all, we’re using math and have to dig out a soft tape measure that has inches on it!) but it will give you a better estimate of your horse’s weight.

Since I’m fairly lazy (and can never find my soft tape measure!), I use this method only when a weight tape is not appropriate, like the following situations:

  • Dosing medications (including high-powered dewormers)
  • Measuring horses under 700-800 lbs
  • Any other time when being off by 100 pounds or more would severely affect the outcome of the situation you are measuring for

...but if you are really ambitious you can use it every time you need a horse weight.

OK, here's how we do it:

  1. Stand horse squarely on a flat surface with his head in a relaxed position
  2. Measure the horse (in inches) from the point of shoulder to the point of croup**
  3. Measure the horse (in inches again) around his heartgirth...approximately 3 inches behind his withers)

**Don’t remember where the horse’s point of shoulder or point of croup are?

The point of shoulder is roughly where the PURPLE arrow in this picture is pointing -- you should be able to feel a pointy bone there.

The point of croup is approximately where the BLUE arrow is pointing.

Now, take your measurements and do the following math to them:

  1. Multiply heartgirth by heartgirth by length
  2. Divide the answer from step 1 by 300
  3. Add 50 to the answer from step 2
  4. Congratulate yourself on figuring out your horse’s weight

Confused? Here’s an example:

I measured my (imaginary) horse correctly and got the following measurements:

Hearthgirth = 75”
Length = 70”

  • Step 1: 75 x 75 x 70 = 393,750
  • Step 2: 393,750/300 = 1312.5
  • Step 3: 1312.5 + 50 = 1362.5

So, my horse weighs approximately 1360 lbs...this method will get you within 3% of the correct body weight (again, depending on his exact build and the accuracy of your measurements), so for this horse, I’d be very confident saying he weighs somewhere between 1322 and 1402 lbs, with 1362 being my best estimate.

And that is all there is to measuring horse weight using measurements and math!

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